20 Real Estate Pros Tell Us Their Top Tune
Music supposedly stimulates growth and intelligence; that’s why people play tunes for plants or pregnant bellies. If you’re planning either, we’ve got some songs you might want to try—these classics are pumping through the ears of the nation’s most successful commercial real estate pros.
(We compiled them all into one Spotify playlist—enjoy it here!)
Dallas-based Billingsley Co co-founder Lucy Billingsley’s favorite songs are tied to memories of her late father, the iconic Trammell Crow. She and her dad used to sing “Side by Side” (made famous by Kay Starr) together, and the songs “The Impossible Dream” from Man of La Mancha and “Some Enchanted Evening” from South Pacific always remind her of him.
Los Angeles-based Kilroy Realty CEO John Kilroy's favorite song is Carlos Santana's beautiful instrumental “Samba Pa Ti.” John believes Carlos Santana is one of the best guitarists in the world, and John tells us he’s named his racing sailboats over the years after this song. John spoke with us last week from Miami where he was about to sail one of his Samba Pa Tis in a sailboat regatta. His 12-year-old son, Liam (one of the world's top-ranked racers, like his dad), also competed, sailing his boat Wildman.
Coral Gables, Florida-based Trust Hospitality CEO Richard Millard says his favorite songs depends on his mood. Sometimes he's just gotta have "Love Is Blue" by Paul Mauriat, his late father's favorite. "I Should've Known Better" by the Beatles reminds him of growing up in England, and "Start Me Up" by the Rolling Stones puts him in a great mood with its rhythm, noise and pent-up excitement.
Steve and Randy Fifield
Chicago-based Fifield Companies founder Steve and vice chair Randy Fifield tell us their favorite song is “Angel” by Jon Secada. It was the first song they remember from when they started dating 23 years ago.
Los Angeles-based Integrated Capital founder Ken Fearn says his favorite song is “Danger Zone” from Top Gun by Kenny Loggins. But he didn’t just dig the plane tricks—he tells us the song “kind of reminds you, as an entrepreneur, of your responsibilities. You’ve got to outmaneuver and out-think your competition every step of the way.”
Don Wood, CEO of Maryland-based Federal Realty Investment Trust, admits that Kenny Chesney's "There Goes My Life" is country and a bit corny. But "come on, it's fantastic!" He says you've got to have a heart of stone if you have a college-age daughter and you don't melt when it comes on the radio.
The president of San Francisco-based MacFarlane Partners has always been a big Al Green fan. Ken's favorite, the one that speaks to him the most, is “Love and Happiness.”
Mike McVean and Lee Belland
Dallas-based Stream Realty Partners Mike McVean (right) tells us his favorite song is “Can’t You See” by the Marshall Tucker Band. Mike tells us he was driving to a new place and a new phase in his life when this song (a favorite from an old phase) came on. It settled him and made him realize it may be a different place, but it’s the same old him. Co-founder Lee Belland (left) tells us his favorite tune is “Turn the Page” by Bob Seger. The song brings back good memories from high school.
DC-based MRP Realty managing partner Bob Murphy says Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band's "Thunder Road" is a rocking song. But more than that, it's one of those songs you learned all the lyrics to. It came out when he was in high school and made him think of personal exploration and getting out into the big wide world.
Boxer Property founder/CEO Andrew Segal loves “Under Pressure” by David Bowie and Queen. His firm is based in Houston and he says the song sums up the Houston market pretty well these days, and of course it’s a very timely choice with Bowie’s passing.
Atlanta-based Fuqua Development CEO Jeff Fuqua, head of one of the most prolific development firms in the Southeast, tells us he’s generally a big fan of Sinatra, but especially relates to “My Way.” He sees a correlation between the lyrics and the way you live your life and do your job.
Oliver Carr III
DC-based Carr Properties founder/CEO Oliver Carr III (right) says there's no explanation needed for why "True To Myself" by Ziggy Marley is his favorite. The name says it all.
Herb Weitzman (left), executive chairman of Dallas-based The Weizman Group and Cencor Realty Services, loves “Rocky Mountain High” by John Denver. It’s his favorite because it’s a life-affirming song that reminds him of the mountains.
Milan and Amy Rubenstein
Chicago-based Windy City RE co-founders Milan and Amy Rubenstein love Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic” so much, it was their first dance at their wedding.
NY-based Ariel Property Advisors president Shimon Shkury (left) has two main reasons for loving "I Just Called To Say I Love You" by Stevie Wonder. He always thinks of his wife when it comes on, and it's how he feels when he has a motivated seller on the other side of the phone.
Dallas-based Henry S Miller Brokerage CEO Greg Miller’s favorite is “Let It Be” by the Beatles. The Beatles were his late brother Vance Jr’s favorite band, so the song comes with good memories.
William Macklowe Co CEO Billy Macklowe loves the surrealist bent of the lyrics to "Bob Dylan's 115th Dream" from the album Bringing It All Back Home. The NY-based exec enjoys Dylan's effective parody of Columbus' discovery of America and says it marked the singer's transition from acoustic to electric, and you can feel the energy.